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AICN Anime Report: ShogunAssassin re-issue; End of Envangelion; .hack; CityHunter; Lupin3; TenchiMuyo; Arjuna; Blame

Father Geek is here with Scott, and another comprehensive Manga/Anime column for your mid-work-week information and pleasure. Annnnnnnnnd I tell you nothing in the way of movie news has put a smile on ol' Father Geek's face as big as this in a long time. I've got a grin as wide as an Ogami Itto sword slash over the news that his great adventure series will be on DVD in time for Christmas. Hint, Hint... I want them all... now, buuuuuut the end of the year will do, I guess, although it would be wonderful to get my hands on a set of the advance screeners to review for the site.

As usual Scott's got coverage of all things even vaguely related to the worlds of Anime and Manga collected together for you to read in one easy to find spot...

The AICN Anime Report...

by Scott Green

Anime Spotlight: Excel Saga Volume 1

Released by ADV Films

The extended period of time between when ADV announced that they had acquired the license for Excel Saga, and the announcement of the release date for its first volume was one of the uglier scenes of mutual assault and battery between an anime company, and its fans. Fans' nagging requests for information was met weak cracks about the translator who went mad working on the series, and threats of further delay. The series more than lives up to its hype. Whether you've been waiting for it, gave up, or never heard of it, there one thing you need to know. it is the most utterly insane work of comedy. Fans of smart, but crazy animated humor like The Tick, or Invader Zim will not be disappointed by Excel Saga. It is safe you say you aren't going to find the repeat bludgeoning of cute Pokemon-esque creatures who assume Golgo 13 death face, or a migrant worker shacking up with the Spirit of the Universe, or torture by eel, piranha, monkey, orca whale, koala bear, and platypus anywhere else. Unless humor holds no sway for you, at least try the first volume of Excel Saga. It is easily the funniest anime title.

The opening animation alone make the series worth watching. It features the hyper energetic Excel, and her pale, dark haired, blood coughing partner Hyatt singing the theme, with appearances by the canine hostage/emergency food supply Mechi (who barks the end theme), and the rest of the cast. The two sing their song about love (and cough in Hyatt's case) with an arm waving dance in various back drops such as a street corner and a men's bath house. Then, there's a lot of running around and kicking, and Hyatt deep throats a banana. Hopefully the extended version will be included in a future volume, which features more singing locations such as a bathroom full of Leiji Matsumoto (Battle Ship Yamato/Star Blazers) style characters, and odd situations for the characters.

Anime is full of character with far too much energy, but none hold a candle to Excel. After graduating high school she takes a job working for her love, the handsome, dark and mysterious Illpalazzo. As the senior agent of ACROSS she works for the organization's modest goal, starting world domination by controlling their home city. Her first mission is the genocidal directive to liquidate the scourge of culture, manga (comic) creators, starting with Excel Saga manga creator Koshi Rikido.

The series also features three side stories which interact with the main one: Pedro the migrant worker who is constantly prevented from getting back to his "sexy wife" and son Sandora, Excel's three neighbor who are the typical looser male protagonists of anime romantic comedies, and the afro adorned action hero Nabeshin, the alter ego of the series' director Shinichi Watanabe.

The general structure of the series is to parody a particular genre in each episode. The first volume parodies space operas, American action movies, dating sims (Japanese video games were the player tries to woo a girl), and corruption exposure movies. Though there is a great deal of cultural humor, the series translated well. Though a western audience is unlikely to catch all of the jokes, many of the references are western, and the jokes are so frequent the missed ones aren't noticeable. ADV help matters with "AD Vid-notes", a pop up video style option that explains many of the cultural references.

Manga Spotlight: Eagle: The Making of An Asian-American President: collection 1

By Kaiji Kawaguchi

The struggle for power is at the center of all of the most exciting drama, from the Sopranos, to the Shield. There are few struggles for power as pure of vicious and the campaign for the American presidency, it's the super bowl of the blood sport of politics. It's always an epic of back room deals, dirty tricks, boiler room sessions, and sales pitches. Just to keep up with what is happening, meeting the necessary people, and being you need to be requires immense will or fortitude on the part of the candidate, his support staff, the those covering the election. Though Eagle does not shy away from interjecting real issues into the political machinations, it boils politics down to its essence of human drama.

Soon after the his mother's death from a gas leak Japanese reporter Takashi Jo is assigned to the Washington bureau to cover the presidential campaign of Democratic Senator Yamaoka at the request of the senator. Despite being immediately overshadowed by incumbent vice president Albert Noah, he has the assets needed for a viable run, the nearly superhuman determination, and people skills, service in Viet Nam, marriage to old New England money, the will to do what it takes to win. But, for every boon there is a corresponding bane. His ambitions seem to have left a few raw nerves, and some skeletons in his closet, but a more rapidly approaching concern is his relationship with his son. After the Senator rebukes his son for trying to trying to lend his ham fisted ruthless to the campaign, the emotionally unstable young man turns to his mother, who is more than willing to advance her own blood line at her husband's expense.

The one complaint is that Senator Yamaoka's ability to sway a crowd seems vastly overstated, namely in a scene where he steals the Vice President's thunder by announcing an immigration initiative minutes before his opponent was to the same. The purpose of such a maneuver is to capture a news cycle, and Eagle portrays it as such, but it also illustrated the minds of casual observers being changed during the speech. One-on-one radical persuasion is believable, and the series does an excellent job depicting the Senator's charisma is face to face situations, but to take a crowd of disinterested people, and get them riveting and applauding doesn't ring true. It is a nit pick, but it rings wrong to a political junky. Oration doesn't work that way any more, the most you can hope for this to throw out a memorable sound by to saying. The point is clearly that he is a great orator, but such is abrupt change is a such rarity that using it so early is the story seems to indicate that they may become common. The saving grace is that the characters are believable enough to carry the story through events that ring false.

Eagle is a must read. It combines thought provoking political and social ideas, with a story and characters so engrossing that the 400 page volume seems like a quick read. It is "Primary Colors" with a Shakespearean dynamic. If you are interested in politics, there's no question, pick up the series. Even if you have no interest in politics, or are too right leaning to be inclined to pick up the series, try it anyway, it human dimension gives it universal appeal.

This Week's Anime And Manga Releases...

Anime...
  • Betterman - Awakening (Vol. 1)
  • Blue Gender - Volume 3
  • Mobile Suit Gundam - Lalah's Fate (Vol. 10)
  • Nadia, The Secret of Blue Water - Nadia in Love (Vol. 9)
  • Ronin Warriors - Warriors Reunited (Vol. 3)

Manga...
  • Bastard #6 Fighter (1 Of 3
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion Part 7 #1 (Of 7)
  • Oh My Goddess Wrong Number Tp
  • Storm Riders Gn #3
  • Uzumaki Vol 2 Tp
  • Vampire Yui Vol 4 #4
  • Wounded Man Gn #7

Uzumaki collected Viz's mature manga anthology Pulp. It is comprised of horrific episodes from a town haunted by the shape of the spiral. Its features many genuinely creepy scenes, and a Lovecraft-ish overtones.

New Websites For Large Scale Yukikaze And Blame! Projects

From Anime News Service

The official website for the OAV Sentou Yousei Yukikaze (Battle Fairy Yukikaze) is now online at here. The official Blame! Movie website is up at www.blamenet.com. A six 5 minute episode series of a web anime are scheduled for distribution commencing 7 June 2002.

Blame takes place in a bizarre, completely artificial world known as "Cyber Dungeon", described as "combination of Aeon Flux, a Fantasy-Style Dungeon, Clive Barker's Hell (as per Hellraiser), and a collection of H.R. Geiger's art.". The hero, Killy is traveling upwards through this world looking for a cure a genetic disease

There is a good Blame manga site at here.

New Macross Series Update

Anime News Service reports the upcoming Macross Zero OVA series will be 5 episodes long, presumably each episode being 30 minutes in length.

Battleflag of the Stars Licensed

Anime on DVD reports that Bandai accidentally announced at the A-Kon convetion that they have acquired the rights to Battleflag of the Stars, the next chapter in the cultural sci-fi Crest of the Stars series.

Hyper Police Licensed

Anime on DVD reports that Image Entertainment has licensed Hyper Police. The first four episodes will be released on 8/23.

Hyper Police is a post apocalyptic action where the human population has been augmented by beast-men, demons, and other fantasy staples who live side by side with the humans. It focuses on the police partnership of a young cat-girl, and her eight tale fox-woman partner who must eat her to gain her ninth tail.

Rahxephon Licensed?

Anime News Service reports Rahxephon has been licensed by an unnamed licensor for release in America. This information has yet to be officially confirmed by any North American Licensor or the Japanese producers of the series.

The popular new series, based on manga by Takeaki Momose and Yutaka Izubuchi (mecha-designer for Gasaraki, Aura Battler Dunbine, Patlabor, Gundam: Char´S Counterattack Etc.) features the talents of composer Yoko Yano, singer/seiyuu(voice actor)Maaya Sakamoto, Director / Rahxephon Designer Yutaka Izubuchi (Mechanical Designs: Patlabor OVA), Chara Designer Akihiro Yamada (Illustrator: Lodoss War), and Mecha Designer Michiaki Sato (Producer: Earth Girl Arjuna).

New Anime From Gainax

The English edition of anime studio AIC's website reports that GAINAX, the studio behind Neon Genesis Evangelion. released the new anime work-"Puchi Puri * Yuhshi" news on May 10th. According to Gainax's press release, Yushi is the youngest heroine in Gainax anime history. This new anime is a jointly produced TV series with AIC and it is scheduled to show in Japan from this Autumn.

Arjuna News

According to Anime on DVD, Bandai will release the first domestic DVD volume of Chikyu Shoujo Arjuna, "Earth Maiden Arjuna," on October 8th, under the simplified title "Arjuna".

Earth Girl Arjuna was one of the biggest hits in Japanese animation last year. The ecologically themed series was directed by Shoji Kawamori (Macross, Escaflowne). The series takes a look at human mismagment and materialism through the eyes of Arjuna, a girl who sees the future after dieing in a motorbike accident.

Anime Game News

From < a href="http://mb.vgdirectory.com">Magic Box Bandai has officially announced Mobile Suit Gundam: Lost War Chronicles for PlayStation 2, a new strategic 3D action shooter. The game is mission based, in which you can play as either the Federation army or the Zion army. In addition to action shooting elements, you can also bring two comrade Mobile Suits to the battle, which can help you to attack and defend from attacks in 3 different formations. There will be dozens of available weapons, and over 30 kinds of Mobile Suits to choose from. Mobile Suit Gundam: Lost War Chronicles is scheduled for release in August.

Images can be see here.

Some screen shots of Infogrames' PlayStation 2 fighting game Dragon Ball Z: Legendary Super Warriors here. (From IGNPS2)

There are unconfirmed reports that Banpresto announced they will release a new Dragonball Z card battle game for GameBoy Color in Japan on August 9. The game features each animated special attacks of each character during the card battle. This is a totally different game from Infogrames' GameBoy Advance Dragonball Z Card battle game.

Anime Expo News

The English edition of anime studio AIC's website reports the anime studio AIC has organized an"Anime Expo2002 Tour" with Nippon Travel Agency to celebrate the 10 years anniversary of Tenchi Muyo! The tour will show the new "Tenchi Muyo! GXP" tv show to an American audience for the first time.

Tenchi Muyo is a sci-fi (in a Star Wars sense) relationship comedy about an assuming boy who ends up with a house hold full of exotic alien women including a brash space pirate, a prim but hot headed princess, her cute sister, a mad scientist, and a mismatched pair of galactic detectives. Depending on which of the series many incarnation, a subset or all of the women are attracted to the boy.

Anime Expo also announced that Hiroaki Goda, director for the Ah! My Goddess anime (a sweet romantic comedy about a young man living with a goddess and her two trouble sisters), and Takashi Watanabe, editor of the Japanese anime magazine NewType will be attending the convention as a guests of honor. A complete lists of guests can be seen here. An English edition of the NewType magazine was to have launched this Spring, but not public statements have been made recently.

Anime Expo will be screening a 35mm prints of Metropolis, Tenchi Muyo in Love, Armitage Poly-Matrix, Akira, Gundam: Char's Counterattack, Legend of the Galactic Heroes - My Conquest Is The Sea of Stars, Escaflowne and Jin-roh.

ADV Announces Gasaraki Box Set

ADV announced on Anime on DVD's forum that they will be releasing a box set of Gasaraki on August 20th, with the eight volume series for $169.98. Gasaraki is a giant robot series with a rare intellectual depth, with an eye towards realistic military and political uses to humanoid armored weapons. A review of series can be seen here

Shin Kurokawa Leaves Animeigo

The web site for domestic anime company AnimEigo Reports producer Shin Kurokawa has left the company to pursue other opportunities.

Big Eyes, Small Mouth Releases

Guardians of Order have updated their release schedule for their "Ultimate Fan Guide" line, combination anime guide books, and source books for their anime theme pen and paper role Playing games, Big Eyes, Small Mouth.

May 24
  • Parallel Dual: Ultimate Fan Guide
  • Trigun: Ultimate Fan Guide #1

Late June
  • Trigun: Ultimate Fan Guide #2

July
  • Armitage: Ultimate Fan Guide

August
  • Hellsing: Ultimate Fan Guide #1

September
  • Fushigi Yugi: Ultimate Fan Guide #1 (BESM Supplement)
  • Niea_7: Ultimate Fan Guide

Hellings follows a rogue vampire working for a secret human police force in the war against vampires.

Niea_7 is a social comedy about a student living hand to mouth, and her roommate, a young 7th class under-alien who is living in Mayuko's closet, building flying saucers out of trash, and eating Mayuko's food.

Parallel Dual is an Evangelion parody with characters and humor much like the sci-fi boy surrounded by strange girls comedy Tenchi Muyo, from the frequent Tenchi animators at AIC.

Trigun is a sci-fi/western action/drama that starts with several light episodes which mask the series' more serious tone. Two insurance agents are sent to track down the outlaw known as Vash the Stampede, who leaves an enormous path of destruction in his wake, but very few injuries. They meet a man clad in red trench coat who is two quick to act silly or chase a woman, but shows signs of incredible speed and skill.

Fushigi Yugi is a fantasy soap opera about a girl who end up a mystical version of China were she must seven celestial warriors to save her adopting kingdom.

Anime on American TV News

Showtime Beyond will be broadcasting the entire post apocalyptic martial arts epic Fist of the North Star TV series again starting on Friday, May 31st. See here.

The Starz Action channel will be launching a new look in July, and showing a number of Pioneer anime releasing, including the remastered Akira, and 3x3 Eyes.

The anime laden Kids' WB dominated the 2001-2002 season as the #1 network on Saturday mornings...

in Boys 6-11, as well as Broadcasting for Kids 2-11, Kids 6-11, Boy s 2-11 and Tweens 9-14, AND the #1 network in Boys 6-11 for the month of May, with their 9th consecutive Sweeps victory.

Anime titles Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Pokemon: Johto League Champions scored in the top ten for boys 6-11.

Pokémon: Johto League Champions led the broadcast competition as the #1 program for the season in Kids 2-11 (4.0/15), Kids 6-11 (4.8/18) and Boys 2-11 (5.3/20).

Cartoon Network's weekday anime Toonami block also fared well in the May sweeps rating. According to Toonzone's news message board block improved the network's overall total day tweens 9-14 delivery (253,000, up 32%) and ratings (1.4, up 27%) to new May records. Within the action franchise itself, all key demographics posted double-digit delivery and ratings increases, including best-ever May performances for tweens 9-14 delivery (438,000, up 36%) and rating (2.3, up 21%), and boys 9-14 delivery (375,000, up 48%) and rating (3.9, up 39%). Toonami delivered an average 845,000 kids 2-11 (+31%) and 538,000 kids 6-11 (+38%). Ratings for kids 2-11 (2.8) grew 22%, while ratings for kids 6-11 (2.9) increased 26%. The block expands Monday, June 3, additional an additional hour beginning at 4:00 PM.

Lupin III License Update

The Japanese media reports Pioneer has obtained the theatrical, video and tv broadcasting rights to all 228 TV-episodes of the three Lupin III tv-series, as well as the four television specials, and one movie not licensed by FUNimation.

Pioneer Entertainment Rep Chad Kime has confirmed to Anime News Networkthat Pioneer has "a Lupin License," but wasn't able to specify exactly what was licensed at this moment.

An official announcement is expected at the America, Licensing 2002 expo, which starts on June 11th.

Lupin III is a fun caper series about an gentlemen thief and his associates.

AnimEigo Announcements from Animazement

From Anime News Network's convention report AnimEigo has confirmed that the Orange Road television series DVD boxed set is now complete and ready to ship to pre-order customers. Like all current AnimEigo DVD boxed sets, the KOR DVD set is a limited edition item available only through AnimEigo directly.

The sold-out subtitled only re-mastered Superdimensional Fortress Macross DVD boxed set will be released to mainstream retailers beginning at the end of June. The series will be broken up for release as a series of 3 disc mini-boxed sets retailing for "just under $90" per set.

AnimEigo will not be releasing the You're Under Arrest OAV series to DVD. Very slightly altered versions of the OAVs were used as the first 4 episodes of the first YUA television series, so these episodes instead will be included with AnimEigo's release of the entire first You're Under Arrest TV series on DVD.

Crusher Joe will be released on a dual-side DVD-10; the goal is to offer a total of some four hours of video on a single purchase.

The contract for Arcadia of My Youth, which had been nearing expiration, has been resigned and the DVD is a "top priority release" after the current batch of projects are completed.

The Classic TOHO Live-Action "Slice & Dice" epic Ronin Re-issues...

Shogun Assassin, Sword of Vengeance, Crossroads to Hell, Lightning Swords of Death, etc... etc...

The eagerly awaited classic live action Lone Wolf & Cub (Baby Cart adventure) movies from Toho starring the phantastic Tomisaburo Wakayama (or later Kinnosuke Nakamura ) as THE arch-typical Samurai sword slinging antihero Ogami Itto will finally premier on domestic DVD by the end of this year.

CPM Announcements from Animazement

From Anime News Network's convention report Central Park Media representatives re-confirmed at last weekend's Animazement convention that CPM does possess the American distribution rights to Shoujo Kakumei Utena episodes 14-26 (out of 39 total episodes) and will tentatively begin to release them by the end of the year.

The DVD re-release of the Record of Lodoss War OVA series will include a new, exclusive mini-comic.

The DVD re-release of Project A-ko will include a 40 minute long "making of" documentary and a re-issue of the soundtrack CD, and will be pan & scan, not widescreen. However, the Project A-ko animation was originally created in full-screen and was later cropped for Japanese theatrical release after its original Japanese debut on home video in full screen format.

The upcoming 2 disc special edition DVD re-release of Graveyard of Fireflies will include new interviews with director Isao Takahata and film critic Roger Ebert, an acknowledged fan of the film, and extensive liner notes explaining the history and elements of Japanese culture presented in the film.

AniMatrix News

The 10 short episode anime prequel to the Matri will debut on the Matrix Website, the last of which will be released theatrically along with the upcoming third Matrix movie. A preview can be seen here.

Anime in Japan

From Anime News Service

According to Natsume Maya-san, Takahashi Youichi's (Captain Tsubasa) latest soccer manga Hungry Heart, serialized in Akita Shoten's Weekly Shonen Champion manga magazine, is to be animated as a TV series.

Plans to air the 13 episode Capatin Harlock Endless Odyssey have been canciled, but the DVD release of the first volume is still planned for September 19th. The series will feature the talents of RinTaro who directed the original 1978 Harlock TV anime has returned to the directors chair. Escaflowne character designer Nobuteru Yuki serves as character designer with script by Sadayuki Murai (Perfect Blue, Boogiepop Phantom) writing script. Seiyuu on the project include Kouichi Yamadera (Spike Spiegel - Cowboy Bebop) Nachi Nozawa (Cobra) as Doctor Zero, Yuko Minakuchi (Yawara), Rei Sakuma (Aika), Seki Tomokazu (Van Fanel - Escaflowne), Emi Shinohara (Mizuki Kaho - Card Captor Sakura) as Shizuka and Fumiko Orikasa (Nazna - Inuyasha).

Garinpeiro's debut for their 95 minute animated feature 6 Angels at a Tokyo movie festival in December of 2001 drew a large amount of attention from fans and press alike. Starting July 6th, the film begins nationwide theater distribution starting in Ikebukuro screening in DLP. Directing is Akimoto Yasuwith Gundam Z and ZZ mecha designer Kobayashi Makoto reprising that role of production on this project while Kato Yutaka of (I'm Gonna Be An Angel) adds her talent as character designer.

Based on the 1983 arcade title, the Xevious anime feature runs 75 minutes and is due from August 3rdalso running at Ikebukuro in DLP format. Purodyusa and Naco will team on production, Takano Yutaka willdesign characters, Masaharu Ogawa is on Mecha design.

Images of characters from Xebec's coming Rikujyou Bouei Tai Mao-chan (Ground Defense Force Mao-chan) have been added to the studio's website.

There one can see an image of the three primary school girls Mao, Misora and Silvia, who protect Japan from mysterious aliens.

Two short ads for Saishu Heiki Kanojo (She, the Ultimate Weapon) can be viewed at the official site's gallery.

KO Beast Century Coming Soon

Anime News Network has learned that Right Stuf has finished translating KO Beast Century, and will soon begin dubbing the series.

City Hunter Author Tsukas Hojo And Northstar's Tetsuo Hara Split From Shueisha

From Anime News Service and French site AnimeLand Tsukas Hojo (City Hunter, Angel Heart) and Tetsuo Hara (Hokuto no Ken, Hana no Keiji) have split from Shueisha to create the new company, Coamix. A shakeup in the foreign translation rights seems to be occuring at this time with new rights not being granted. As existing rights expire, they may not being renewed. Animeland mentions in France the fallout includes licensor Tonkam withdrawing Rash and volumes 6-10 of Cat's Eye in late June with future withdrawls expected. City Hunter and "Ken le Survivant" appear to be unaffected in their respective French releases. Coamix is involced in Gutsoon! Media's Raijin weekly manga anthology project slated for release in America this fall.

Japanese Amazon Opens Anime Stores

Amazon.co.jp opened an anime section to it store. There is a 10% discount until June 30th.

Galaxy Fraulein Yuna on DVD

Anime on DVD reports ADV will be releasing all five episodes of Galaxy Fraulein Yuna on dVD on August sixth.

American .Hack Homepage Online

Bandai has opened its official English language homepage devoted to the upcoming American release of the first .Hack Playstation 2 RPG. The website located at www.dothack.com contains information and images from both the game and the first anime OAV that will be released with it. An E3 announcement confirmed that at least the American version of the PS2 game will include the option of English dubbed or the original Japanese spoken dialogue.

Bandai Entertainment reports that the Newtype Magazine's May reader's poll, published in the June print issue, ranked the current .hack//SIGN anime TV series as favorite series of Japanese Newtype readers.

For those curious, the full lists is as follows:

  • 1. .hack//SIGN
  • 2. RahXephon
  • 3. Full Metal Panic
  • 4. Cowboy Bebop
  • 5. Scryed
  • 6. Chobits
  • 7. Noir
  • 8. Mobile Suit Gundam
  • 9. Sakura Taisen
  • 10. Evangelion
  • 11. Onegai Teacher
  • 12. Azumanga Daioh
  • 13. One Piece
  • 14. Inuyasha
  • 15. Nadesico
  • 16. Detective Conan
  • 17. Kanon
  • 18. Galaxy Angel
  • 19. Tokyo Underground
  • 20. Gaogaiger Final (OAV series)

AnimeTrax Delays

Right Stuf reports due to production and approval delays, AnimeTrax sound trakcs has announced that there will be a slight 2 week delay in their May audio releases: Best of Lost Universe OST, Slayers Try VOX OST, and Martian Successor Nadesico TV OST.

His and Her Circumstances DVD 1 Trivia

Right Stuf has been touting the complexity of the DVD release of the shoujo high school directed by Evangelion creator Hideaki Anno drama Kara Kano aka Hist and Her Circumstances

From Right Stuf: There are 79,713 assets in the first volume. "Assets" include Menus, Still pictures, Subtitles, Audio segments, Video files and menu button masks. Yes, you read that right. 79 THOUSAND. A normal DVD has about 1,000 assets.

There are 347,006 lines of code in the DVD authoring. For comparison, another DVD-9 we compared this disc to has 6,466 lines of code. "Daydream Believers", a pretty complicated and impressive DVD-9 with several interviews, 3 commentary tracks, and many bonus features, weighs in at 13,649 lines of authoring code (and only about 800 assets).

It is possible (and we are checking this right now) that this disc may be the MOST COMPLEX DVD OF ALL TIME.

So, you can see that a slight delay is probably warranted to check all of the material. :) We are sorry for the delay, but we're sure it will be worth it. Also, note that on the disc there are Spanish subtitles and sign tracks, whereas the packaging doesn't say that they're there. :)

New Japanese Top 100 Anime List Revealed

The May 26th episode of TV Asahi's popular "Kore ga Nihon no Best 100" (These Are Japan's Best 100) program compiled viewer votes to determine the top 100 anime ever.

The complete list is as follows:

1. Doraemon 2. Lupin III 3. Heidi of the Alps 4. My Neighbour Totoro 5. Sazae-san 6. Chibi Maruko-chan 7. Manga Japanese Fairy Tales 8. Mobile Suit Gundam 9. Nausicca of the Valley of Wind 10. Dr Slump 11. Ge Ge Ge no Kitaro 12. Kiki's Delivery Service 13. Dog of Flanders 14. Galaxy Express 999 15. Spirited Away 16. Urusei Yatsura 17. Tetsuwan Atom 18. 3000 Leagues in Search of Mother 19. Touch 20. Hakushon Daimaou 21. Moomin 22. Space Cruiser Yamato 23. Candy Candy 24. Obake no Q-tarou 25. Himitsu no Akko-chan 26. Jungle Emperor Leo 27. Crayon Shin-chan 28. Mahoutsukai Sally 29. Kontyuu Monogatari Minashigo Hacchi 30. Ikkyuu-san 31. Dragon Ball 32. Dokonjou Gaeru 33. Ashita no Joe 34. Yattaman 35. Cat's Eye 36. Ninja Hattori-kun 37. Attack No. 1 38. Scientific Ninja Team Gatchaman 39. Tom and Jerry 40. Adventures of Maya the Bee 41. Mononoke Hime 42. Rose of Versailles 43. Soreike! Anpanman 44. Mazinger Z 45. Oishinbo 46. Haikara-san ga Tooru 47. Tetsujin 28 48. Future Boy Conan 49. Ace o Nerae 50. Slam Dunk 51. Inakappe Taishou 52. Tensai Bakabon 53. Kyojin No Hoshi 54. City Hunter 55. Laputa 56. Tiger Mask 57. Parman 58. Dokaben 59. Ribbon no Kishi 60. Devilman 61. Kiteretsu Daihyakka 62. Cyborg 009 63. Youkai Ningen Bem 64. Chiisana Viking Bikke 65. Majyokko Meg-chan 66. Captain Wing 67. Osomatsu-kun 68. Babel II 69. Mach Go Go Go 70. Yawara! 71. Kinnikuman 72. Fujiko A. Fujio's Warau Salesman 73. Cutey Honey 74. Jarinko Chie 75. Yu Yu Hakusho 76. Glass Mask 77. Neon Genesis Evangelion 78. Akadou Suzunosuke 79. Asari-chan 80. Shounen Ashibe 81. High School! Kimengumi 82. Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon 83. Fist of the North Star 84. Yu-Gi-Ou 85. Pocket Monsters 86. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 87. Yuusha Raideen 88. Akira 89. Runrun the Flower Child 90. Tottoko Hamutarou 91. Ojya Majyo Doremi Dokka~n! 92. Eight Man 93. Obocchyama-kun 94. Maison Ikkoku 95. Maicchingu Machiko-sensei 96. Hajime Ningen Giatrus 97. Karimero 98. Rascal Raccoon 99. Ken the Wolf Boy 100. Young Kindaichi's Casebook

AnimeNation notes classics overwhelmingly dominate the list, with the only 4 TV titles titles and 2 movies from within the past 5 years making it onto the list: King of Games Yu-Gi-Oh from 1998, the currently on-air Ojamajo Doremi Dokkan (Ojamajo Doremi season 4), Pocket Monster (currently broadcasting new episodes), and Tottoko Hamutaro represent current and recent TV anime and Mononoke Hime and Spirited Away represent recent theatrical anime. Also interesting is the fact that Hanna-Barbera's American Tom & Jerry cartoon from 1975 made it onto the list at #39. (While in America the term "anime" refers exclusively to Japanese animation, in Japan the word "anime" refers animation of any style or origin.)

End of Envangelion

Manga Enterainment will be releasing the End of Evangelion movie on VHS and DVD July 30th.

From the press release:

From the animators of GAINAX Studios (The Wings of Honneamise) and Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell, Blood: The Last Vampire) comes the most decisive chapter in the Neon Genesis Evangelion saga. Featuring groundbreaking animated action sequences and mind-blowing dramatic revelations; Death & Rebirth is truly a composition of epic proportions. Manga Entertainment will release Evangelion: Death & Rebirth on DVD and VHS in both English and the original Japanese language on July 30, 2002. Visit the special site www.deathandrebirth.com to view the trailer, or participate in either our webmaster or online fan contest.

Manga's most technically advanced DVD to date includes a double-sided DVD, special audio commentary and an exclusive Mokuji Interactive feature (Mokuji = "Contents"). Once activated, this feature will allow the viewer to select from an on-screen, chapter specific index of Eva-related terms, character descriptions, and other valuable information while viewing the film. The perfect resource for the seasoned Evangelion fan eager to learn more as well as a comprehensive introduction for those new to the story!

15 years after the Antarctic blast known as the Second Impact, the world once again faces the threat of the Angels - super-powered entities with the capacity to bring about a Third Impact capable of destroying all human life.

Summoned by his estranged father, 14-year-old Shinji Ikari reluctantly embraces his destiny as the pilot of the bio-engineered vessel known as "Evangelion Unit-01." Alongside fellow Eva pilots Asuka Langley and Rei Ayunami, Shinji battles against the host of invading Angels. But all is not as it seems. Amidst layers of subterfuge, and the competing agendas of secret government organizations each seeking to manipulate the children and their Evas for their own ends, Shinji, Rei and Asuka must each come to terms with their past and unearth their own identities.

Told from the various perspectives of the tale's primary characters, Death & Rebirth is a composition of epic proportions. The first half of the film is an orchestrated retelling of episodes 1 through 24 of the original groundbreaking Neon Genesis Evangelion saga. Supplemented with startling new animated sequences, Death offers a unique insight into the personal worlds of the characters as conceived of by the series' director Hideki Anno.

In Rebirth, the second half of the film, we see an alternate vision of episode 25 of the original series. Seele, the secret international organization behind the development of both the Evangelion project and the Human Complementation project, is concerned about the way the projects' director, Ikari Gendo, is proceeding. Convinced that Gendo is implementing his own plans, they set out to wrest control of the projects and capture Eva Unit-01.

Using the nine-production model Evangelions under their command, and a force of conventional troops, Seele undertakes a full-scale invasion of Central Dogma - the operation control center beneath Tokyo-3.

All key roles in the English language version of Death and Rebirth are reprised by the original voice-actors from the Neon Genesis Evangelion series!

ComicOne's "Kung Fu Comic Invasion" Begins

Fresh off the success of Storm Riders, ComicsOne has announced that it is publishing Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre, another of artist Wing Shing Ma's visually stunning Kung Fu comics. The first volume, shipping in August 2002, will present this sweeping Kung Fu epic to American readers for the first time. Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre is based on the famous martial arts novel by Jin Yong (Louis Cha), which later spawned numerous television series and several Hong Kong movie adaptations - the most recent of which is Jet Li's Kung Fu Cult Master.

Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre is a full-color Kung Fu comic set during the Mongol invasion of ancient China. The story follows young WuJi Cheung's growth as a Kung Fu master amidst the frenzied pursuit of two ancient, powerful weapons: Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre. In order to unite his country and overthrow China's Mongol oppressors, WuJi must develop his own formidable powers while understanding both swords' relationship to his parents' legacy. The first volume, coming in August, depicts WuJi's birth to parents from rival clans and his education at the hands of the master swordsman Xie Xun, the Golden-Haired Lion King.

Look for Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre #1 and Storm Riders #5 in the June issue of Previews. Both books will ship in August of 2002.

Availability

Volume 1 of the ongoing 25 volume series will be available in August 2002. The full color 120 page graphic novels will be priced at $13.95. Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre can be purchased at comic shops and bookstores across the US or at http://www.comicsone.com/heaven/

Readers Talkback
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  • June 5, 2002, 1:05 p.m. CST

    RE: Lone Wolf & Cub DVDs...

    by Abyss

    IT&#39;S ABOUT FUCKING TIME! We&#39;ve been sitting on the awful UK Arsemagic DVDs for years now. Every single one of those six discs has at least one scene that is ruined by being too dark. And I think they were cut too. Can&#39;t wait for the new releases, I trust they&#39;ll fix these problems. Tomisaburo Wakayama was a GOD among men. Watch him and learn how the blade is used in the hands of a true master.

  • June 5, 2002, 1:31 p.m. CST

    YAAAAY! KO Senki Beast Sanjuushi (KO Century Beast)! YAAAY

    by JTylor

    My God I love that show. The first two episodes kinda drag but the third ep. of the first series and the whole of the second series are the funniest things I&#39;ve seen in a long time. When one of the gags involves four of the main characters playing mahjong to determine who gets to be eaten first in a dire situation... ah, memories. Huge fan, can&#39;t wait.

  • June 5, 2002, 1:33 p.m. CST

    by JUSTICE41

    Yes, very dark picture. Can be fixed by adjusting brightness and contrast.. I want these. Shogun was the first movie besides Jaws to actually scare me. I loved it and own the DVD but would like to have all of them.

  • June 5, 2002, 3:34 p.m. CST

    Correction - it is NOT &#39;The End of Evangelion&#39;

    by MechaGhost

    Manga Entertainment is *not* releasing &#39;The End of Evangelion: Air/Magokoro wo Kimi ni&#39; on July 30th. Manga Ent. is releasing &#39;Evangelion: DEATH & REBIRTH&#39; on July 30th. This is the first Evangelion movie, that is followed by End of Eva (DEATH is a 60min recap of episodes 1-24, and REBIRTH is the first 30mins of the new version of episode 25). &#39;The End of Evangelion&#39; (new version of episodes 25 and 26) is not set to be released until September. Just FYI.

  • June 5, 2002, 5:40 p.m. CST

    I want the uncut YOU&#39;RE UNDER ARREST OVAs...

    by Kiyone

    I don&#39;t see the point of releasing just the edited-for-Japanese-TV (for commercial time, NOT content) versions of the OVA episodes; I expounded on this at some length on the Anime Nation DVD message board (yes, the AN Forum "Kiyone" and the AICN Talkback "Kiyone" are one and the same person, just in case anyone was wondering), so I&#39;ll just cut-and-paste it here since I&#39;m too lazy to paraphrase myself: "Damn... normally I love everything AnimEigo does, but that sucks. Each OVA episode was edited by about 3 minutes to accomodate commercials; plus they replaced the great opening and closing songs sung by Sakiko Tamagawa (Natsumi) and Akiko Hiramitsu (Miyuki). You also won&#39;t get the great "crane" shot in the opening credits, cited in the Gilles Poitras book Anime Essentials as something possible to do in animation that looks simple but would be extremely complicated to shoot in real life, with the "camera" going up a hill towards Natsumi, Miyuki and the Honda Today mini-patrol car, circling round Natsumi and Miyuki, who look up at a 747 as it approaches, flies over and then lands at Haneda while the camera looks at Natsumi and Miyuki from an angle 180 degrees opposite of where the shot started. I was hoping that since the first 4 TV episodes were just the OVA episodes edited for time, AnimEigo would just have on the first "TV" disk the four intact OVA episodes, with an explanation as to why the opening credits are different for those people that haven&#39;t already seen it. A branching disk would probably be the ideal solution, so that both versions of the episodes could be put on the same disk, but that would be too expensive for a company like AnimEigo to produce. At least I still have my hybrid LDs."

  • June 5, 2002, 5:59 p.m. CST

    Yes...yes...YES!!!!

    by Sod Off Baldric

    Live action Lone Wolf and Cub on DVD by Christmas, baby! I know what I want under my tree this year. I have been dying to see these films ever since I started reading the Dark Horse re-release of the comics. What a superb story. Off-topic: recently purchased the &#39;Seven Samurai&#39; DVD...Holy flarking shnit! What a movie! Worth every penny. Check it out if you&#39;ve never seen it...if you love samurai cinema you will not be disappointed.

  • June 5, 2002, 7:22 p.m. CST

    RE:LONE WOLF

    by Manaqua

    Checkit http://www.animeigo.com/samurai/ been following this for a spell. The &#39;date&#39; they originally said was spring. Looks like late summer now. SWEEEETTTTT! Lets hope its done right. This could be the shizznit.....M

  • June 5, 2002, 11:49 p.m. CST

    Lone Wolf on DVD Big Deal

    by kingink123

    These video&#39;s have been available on VHS for a few years through Animeigo. And pretty damn good quality. Of course, if they come out on DVD, I&#39;m there. But the point is, the movies are easy to find and they do the comics justice. Samurai Assassin was lame compared to the original versions. But I&#39;ll be ever thankful to Roger Corman for releasing these films in the 70&#39;s. Thank goodness for late night TV.

  • June 6, 2002, 12:30 a.m. CST

    RahXephon & Music

    by BigFire

    Once again, Yoko Kanno only wrote the openning song "Hemisphere". The rest of the music is written by veteran Jazz musician Ichiko Hashimoto, who also voice one of the role as well as singing two songs in the show.

  • June 6, 2002, 1:47 a.m. CST

    I am what you would call a casual anime fan..

    by Cap'n Chaos!

    so admittedly, I&#39;m sure I missed a lot of jokes, but I have a buddy that picked up Excel Saga a couple weeks early at the ADV booth at the Dallas A-Kon. It is absolutely hysterical. The Yoda gag alone is worth getting the disc.